The Brothers Grimm, Jacob and Wilhelm, are credited with filling the lives of little children with wonder and dreams the collection of fairy tales that they wrote in their lifetime. The two brothers were well-educated and known for their intelligence. They authored a collection of fairy tales in an attempt to live up to the excellent example set to them by their father. Some of their most interesting works are still prominent in the present day. For instance, Red Riding Hood and Little Snow White are some of their most popular works. One of the most astounding and acknowledged aspects of their writing is that the stories they wrote are used to instill moral values in children. This paper shall analyze two of the pieces written, these are Snow White and Red Riding Hood, regarding their plot, setting, characters, the point of view and theme.
There are a few similarities that are noticeable between the two fairy tales in focus. Like most of the stories the Grimm Brothers wrote, these two stories had very few characters. Another aspect that is similar between these two books is that there are characters that represent good whereas there are those characters that represent bad things. Both stories are set in the forest even though Red Riding Hood seems to be a little bit in a modern setting. Like most fairy tales, the time is undefined since they both begin with, "Once upon a time..."
Snow White alludes to the ancient setting of kingdoms. There are kings, queens, princes, and princesses in the story. The queen asks for a beautiful child when she pricks her finger on a spindle (Grimm and Grimm, 2). She gives birth to a child who is as white as snow and with lips as red as scarlet. Snow White is beautiful on the inside and outside. When her mother dies, and the king gets a new queen, the new queen is vain and wicked. She attempts to kill Snow on two different occasions. The first, she is saved by the huntsman and some dwarfs. The second time she is rescued by a prince. The Magic mirror owned by the queen insists that Snow White is the fairest of them all in the land. With this fairy tale, the moral of the story is that good always triumphs over bad.
Red Riding Hood is a modern fairy tale. There are no kingdoms and magic. However, there is a lot of personification as seen in the Big Bad Wolf. The little girl who wears a red hood is called Red Riding Hood (Hyman, Grimm and Grimm, 2). She is sent by her mother to deliver food to her grandmother's cottage in the forest. Upon disclosing to the wolf where she was headed, the wolf goes ahead of her and swallows her grandmother. He lies in wait to consume the girl to while disguised as her grandmother. The little girl falls into the wolf's trap and gets eaten. However, she and her grandmother get saved by a hunter who was passing. The lesson that can be derived from the story is children should exercise caution with strangers. Also, they should obey their parents.
There are several themes explored in both tales. The tale of Snow White expands on a broken family as can be evidenced by the hate that the wicked queen has towards Snow White that she intends to kill her. Grimm justice is evident whereby the queen get punished in the end and chance encounters such as Snow White meeting the dwarfs and the prince who both save her life. The themes explored in the latter tale include the reliability of internal instincts as shown in Red's inability to trust her gut that was warning her about the wolf. The central theme obedience to parents as seen in the fate that strikes Red when she leaves the path as her mother had instructed and also the wisdom of being careful with strangers.
In conclusion, the Grimm Brothers fairy tales are meant to educate children on social skills and moral values. These stories have unique settings each, with unique and simple characters and employ various elements of writing such as personification and fantasy.
Hyman, Trina S., Jacob Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm. Little Red Riding Hood., 1983. Print.
Jacob Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm. Snow-White And the Seven Dwarfs. Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1972.
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